THE TREE (Fragments of poetics on fire)

An international dance legend offers a powerful expression of love for nature on the verge of collapse.

22 may 2021

Carolyn Carlson is a worldwide dance legend. Born in California and now a French citizen, she is first and foremost a nomad, always seeking to develop and share her poetic universe. In fact, Carlson prefers the term “visual poetry” to “choreography” to describe her work. For more than four decades, she has created over 100 pieces, many of which are landmarks in the history of dance. In 2006, her work was awarded the first Golden Lion ever given to a choreographer by the Venice Biennale.

The Tree is her latest creation for the company and thanks to its dreamlike image and through the virtuosity of the 8 dancers who perform the piece, she offers a powerful and vital expression of love for nature on the verge of collapse, hoping for rebirth like a phoenix from the ashes. Drawing on philosopher Gaston Bachelard’s Fragments of a Poetics of Fire, Carolyn Carlson chose the poetic and symbolic power of flames and, more broadly, the complexity of natural elements, as inspiration for her new creation. She collaborates with the visual artist Gao Xingjian, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2000, who sublimates the scenography with his abstract paintings.

The team

Choreography: Carolyn Carlson.
Assistant choreographer: Colette Malye.
Visual artist: Gao Xingjian.
Music: Aleksi Aubry-Carlson, René Aubry, Maarja Nuut, K. Friedrich Abel.
Lighting design: Rémi Nicolas.
Dancers: Juha-Pekka Marsalo, Riccardo Meneghini, Sara Simeoni, Constantine Baecher, Chinatsu Kosakatani, Céline Maufroid e p. Maes, Yutaka Nakata, Sara Orselli.
Lighting design: Guillaume Bonneau.
Stage director: Jank Dage.
Sound and video director: Rémi Malcou.
Production: Carolyn Carlson Company.
Coproduction: Théâtre National de Chaillot, Théâtre Toursky Marseille, Ballet du Nord / Centre Chorégraphique National Roubaix Hauts-de-France, Equilibre Nuithonie Fribourg.
Residences in CDCN-Atelier de Paris, salle Allende (Mons-en-Baroeul) and Kiosk (Marquette-lez-Lille).
With the support of: Crédit du Nord.
The Carolyn Carlson Company was founded by the French Ministry for Culture (DGCA) and is supported by Tilder.


22 - 19:00.


From 16 to 42€ /discounts

Friends of Arriaga:
From 25% to 35% DISCOUNT.

Groups, young people, over-65s, unemployed, large families and people with 33%+ disability:

Theatre professionals:

Last minute discount (for above-mentioned groups, except Friends of Arriaga):

Last minute discount for Young Friends of Arriaga:

People with disabilities who use wheelchairs:
50% DISCOUNT (in proscenium balcony and one accompanying person)


70 min.